Bali is known as being a surfer’s paradise, and now, thanks to Starbucks, it is also a destination of interest for coffee-lovers in Southeast Asia.
Last Saturday (Jan 12), the largest coffee chain in the world opened its biggest Southeast Asian store on the island of the gods. Starbucks Dewata Coffee Sanctuary takes up a whopping 20,000 sq ft of space, the company said in a statement.
Starbucks has been operating in Indonesia for 16 years, in partnership with licensee PT Sari Coffee Indonesia.
The coffee chain with 28,000 stores worldwide said in its statement that the new store in Seminyak pays tribute to the coffee culture in Indonesia – the fourth largest Arabica coffee growing region in the world. Since 1971, Sumatra coffee has been a staple offering at Starbucks Indonesia, it added.
“The Coffee Sanctuary marks the tenth Starbucks Reserve Bar store in Indonesia, one of 185 stores around the world, with the majority in Asia,” said Kevin Johnson, CEO of Starbucks Coffee Company.
The design of the Dewata Coffee Sanctuary is thought through down to the details.
It bears an original logo – a lotus flower – that represents Balinese philosophy, and is inspired by Bali’s Double Ikat weaving technique.
What are Bali beaches without their iconic, crystal blue waves? The store’s facade – created using locally-made red bricks in the shape of half circles – was designed to mirror those. Apparently, if you’re driving past, it will appear as though the exterior is moving.
The interior of the facility was designed in partnership with local craftspeople and artists, and inspired by traditional Balinese houses.
There is an Arabica coffee tree farm spanning 1,000 sq ft (the size of a typical Indonesian farm, according to Starbucks) on the premise that visitors can explore.
Those who opt to take a guided tour can experience what it’s like to de-pulp and wash coffee beans during the harvest season in the region. They also get to wash, dry and rake green coffee beans.
Bound to catch the eye of a first-time visitor is a 9.1m-tall (30-foot), hand-carved wooden mural that depicts the history of coffee in Indonesia, created to pay tribute to local farmers.
On the first floor is the Starbucks Reserve bar which offers customers a taste of its small-batch coffees.
The Starbucks Reserve Roasteries have been making waves globally, popping up in destinations such as New York, Seattle and Shanghai.
The space also features a 13-metre teak Starbucks core bar – inspired by Bali’s terraced rural landscapes – which offers Starbucks’ signature beverages. The bar features a wall inspired by flora from the region.
Look closely and you’ll notice hand-carved, old-meets-new stone tiles that make up the floor and wall design in the Reserve Bar.
Also located on the first floor is this interactive video wall set up to show how coffee is planted, processed, roasted, shipped and brewed.
On the second floor is the first coffee seedling nursery to be located inside a Starbucks store.
The greenhouse is surrounded by glass panes. Here, visitors can witness and help tend to the first stages of delicate plants. There is also a Balinese farmer present to explain more about coffee plant farming.
Adjoined to the nursery is a tasting room which also boasts a wooden theme, and is brightly lit by natural light coming in from the full-length windows. Here, visitors can taste coffee that has not gone through a filter.
Placed throughout the store are trees planted in clay pots inspired by a traditional Sumatran pattern and the Starbucks Siren.
Many Starbucks fans would be pleased to know that there are some unique drinks offered at the sanctuary – and they look equally as Insta-worthy as the place.
According to the Dewata Bali’s menu on its website, the store is offering drinks such as Lavender Latte, House Affogato and Origin Flight.
The Lavender Latte is a flowery, candy-like, milky concoction with a rich Reserve espresso, while Starbucks’ House Affogato is made up of two shots of Reserve espresso, Demerara syrup poured over vanilla ice cream, and a dash of cinnamon.
The Origin Flight consists of three limited batches of Starbucks Reserve coffee brewed with the “Pour Over brewing method”.
There is also a wide variety of food items. Some of the more fascinating ones include Nutella Banana Panini and “so local favourites” – Milk Pie and Indonesian Fresh Salad.
And of course, the Starbucks Bearista also takes on a Bali twist here.